Scattering of body waves to surface waves is a means for converting energy with essentially infinite horizontal wavelength to motion with short wavelengths. This process, of interest to engineers designing structures with large horizontal dimensions such as pipelines, tunnels, and bridges, has received little attention from seismologists. Finite-difference calculations have been performed for the simple case of vertically incident SV and P waves impinging on a step change in surface elevation. These calculations predict scattered Rayleigh waves with amplitudes as large as 0.4 times the amplitude of the surface motion of the incident waves in the absence of any topographic relief, even for incident wavelengths several times the height of the step. Both vertical and inclined steps are examined.

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